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1840 Census Records Research Guide

By Family Tree Editors

Table of Contents

The 1840 census was nearly identical to the 1830 census. For details, see the 1830 Census Records Research Guide.

Deep-dive into US census records and other population counts. From helpful research resources to clues about solving ancestor mysteries, our experts provide solutions to your toughest census conundrums.
Get a free downloadable form to organize and record your family history discoveries from the 1840 US Census.

1840 Census Fast Facts

OFFICIAL
DATE

June 1

NUMBER OF
QUESTIONS

12

NUMBER OF
STATES

26

DECENNIAL
CENSUS NUMBER

6th

NOTABLE
QUESTIONS

Further age breakdown
Military pensioners
Insane
Students in school

10 LARGEST CITIES

New York City, NY
Baltimore, MD
New Orleans, LA
Philadelphia, PA
Boston, MA
Cincinnati, OH
Brooklyn, NY
Northern Liberties District, PA
Albany, NY
Charleston, SC

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1840 Census Form Images

Page 1

Page 2

United States Census Bureau (click here to view larger and download)

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1840 Census Questions

  1. The number of free white males and females, respectively:
    – under 5 years
    – 5 to 10 years
    – 10 to 15 years
    – 15 to 20 years
    – 20 to 30 years
    – 30 to 40 years
    – 40 to 50 years
    – 50 to 60 years
    – 60 to 70 years
    – 70 to 80 years
    – 80 to 90 years
    – 90 to 100 years
    – 100 years and upward
  2. The number of slaves and free colored persons of each sex, respectively:
    – under 10 years
    – 10 to 24 years
    – 24 to 36 years
    – 36 to 55 years
    – 55 to 100 years
    – 100 years and upward
  3. The number of white persons and the number of “slaves and colored persons” who were deaf and dumb aged:
    – under 14 years
    – 14 and under 25 years
    – 25 years and upward
  4. The number of persons in each family employed in mining; agriculture; commerce; manufacture and trade; navigation of the ocean; navigation of canals, lakes and rivers; and learned professional engineers.
  5. Name and age of pensioners for Revolutionary or military service.
  6. The number of White persons who were deaf and dumb:
    – under 14 years
    – 14 and under 25 years
    – 25 years and upward
  7. The number of White persons who were were blind.
  8. The number of White persons who were insane and idiots (at public and private charge).
  9. The number of Colored persons who were deaf, dumb and blind.
  10. The number of Colored persons who were insane and idiots (at public and private charge).
  11. Number of colleges or universities, primary schools, and grammar schools.
    – Number of students or scholars associated with each institution.
    – Number of scholars at public charge.
  12. Number of White persons age 20 years and older who could not read and write.

United States Census Bureau, Index of Questions: 1840

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Where can I find the 1840 census?

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How to Read the 1840 Census

Please refer to the How to Read the 1830 Census section of the 1830 Census Records Research Guide.

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1840 Census Research Resources

Websites

Census.gov
1840 Fast Facts
1840 Overview
1840 Index of Questions

Cyndi’s List
1840 U.S. Federal Census Online Records and Indexes

FamilySearch Wiki
United States Census 1840

RootsWeb
1840 U.S. Census

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